David Frum

03.28.13

Ford India's Less Than Amazing Ad

Ford India decides on second thought that showing kidnapped women bound and gagged was not an appropriate marketing strategy. NB - that's supposed to be former Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi flashing the "v" for victory sign in the front seat. Extra gross!

Update/Correction:

"All of us at Ford and JWT were as shocked as you were," [marketing chief Jim] Farley said today in New York at a breakfast event that kicked off the New York International Auto Show. "We are extremely sorry about the incident….It is not acceptable."

First published late last week, Ford was scrambling to contain the controversy throughout the weekend and into this week. The agency has fired several workers, according to several reports.

A Ford India spokeswoman said Monday that the company is investigating whether anyone at the automaker ever saw the print ads, which were never used commercially but appeared over the weekend on a website showcasing creative advertising.

Thanks to Scott Weisbrod for pointing that out.